5th annual Tour de Manure offers fun-filled weekend | TheUnion.com

5th annual Tour de Manure offers fun-filled weekend

Sierraville’s Tour de Manure celebrates its 5th year June 15.
Photo submitted by Laura Read/ReadWriteShoot.com |

SIERRAVILLE — The annual Tour de Manure Metric Century in Sierra Valley celebrates its fifth year June 15. The tour welcomes all people looking for a bit of weekend fun — not just cyclists but also anyone who wants to enjoy some barbecue tri-tip and chicken, some foot-stomping tunes and a browse along Sierraville’s blossoming commercial row.

The tour was launched five years ago by volunteers at the Sierraville Fire and Rescue Department to raise funds for training and equipment and also to showcase the town and bring people into the valley to enjoy its beauty.

“It’s a really fun event for the whole valley,” said tour boss Tami McCollum. “We’ve grown from 150 riders our first year to 401 last year. We have a big party that’s really popular at the finish line, serving food from local restaurants like Los Dos Hermanos and from a local catering company Pasquetti’s Silver Eagle Catering. Sierra County Supervisor Paul Roen barbecues the tri-tip for us.”

The tour’s name came along when firefighters put their heads together to think of something fun.

“First we thought of “Cowpokes and Spokes,” said Doug Read, tour founder. “But when we were thinking about how all the cows are coming home from the Central Valley in the spring and how there are cow pies on the road from the cattle trucks, we thought of Tour de Manure. People love the name. When we put up flyers in bike shops in Reno, Tahoe City, Carson City, Truckee and all around, the shop owners get big grins when they see us coming. They all know about the tour.”

The ride offers three planned routes, all beginning at the Sierraville fire station and heading east on Highway 89/49. At Sattley, the route turns north onto A-23. The 62-mile version goes all the way to Highway 70, turns right through Beckwourth, and then, after a few miles, turns right off the highway onto the quieter road of A-24. Then the course zigzags among the ranchlands and Feather River headwaters before entering Loyalton, where it gains a hill on an out-and-back scenic tour of Sierra Brooks before rolling over gentle terrain back to Sierraville.

The shorter 45-mile route turns right from A-23 at Marble Hot Springs Road to enter the valley’s stretches of creeks and marshes, then meets up in Loyalton with the longer route. The 30-mile route is a simple out-and-back along historic Highway 49 between Sierraville and Loyalton. Check out the map and details at sierravillefireandrescue.com, or the Tour de Manure registration page at active.com.

SAG wagons guided by the trusty Sierraville fire and rescue crew will cruise around to help anyone needing extra water, a flat-tire fix or a helping hand, McCollum said.

For the fifth year, Tahoma resident and talented musician Michael Hogan and his band will welcome the weary cyclists to the finish line. This year, Calpine musicians Art Franco and Jan Drummond will also be on stage. The always-filling Tour de Manure menu is available for $15 for anyone who doesn’t register for the tour.

The bike ride fee is $60. Registrations are taken in person on tour day, but the organizers ask people to register ahead so they can calculate food. Registrants receive a new edition of the “mad bull” T-shirt designed by Sattley cartoonist Jay Huebert, as well as the meal and party, SAG wagon support and pit-stop food and drink.

Register now at http://active.com. (Enter “Tour de Manure 2013” into the search engine.) Or pick up registration forms at your local bike shop in Truckee, Tahoe City or Reno or in Sierraville at Sierraville Kitchen or Los Dos Hermanos.

The tour starts between 8 and 9 a.m. June 15 at the Sierraville firehouse.

“At the end of the day, it’s still a bunch of firefighters who don’t ride bicycles putting on a fun event for people who love to ride,” Read said.

For information, go to http://active.com, or the Sierraville Fire and Rescue website, http://sierravillefireandrescue.com/html or the Tour de Manure’s Facebook page.

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